mrsmelwoodbeer

and her exploits in the world of hand crafted beer…..

Real Ale, Pilgrimage & CIDER!

We very rarely stop for breath these days at Melwood! But following our very successful event at The Baltic Social John and I were able to get away for a few days for our bi annual Solstice Pilgrimage to Glastonbury.  Not the festival mind; that’s in the neighbouring village of Pilton a few miles down the road, but the actual town of Glastonbury, the sacred Isle of Avalon.  It’s a place that means a lot to us and we visit every Solstice and climb Glastonbury Tor to watch the sun rise on this special day.  It was spectacular this year I must say and I have posted pictures of the sun on twitter and facebook.  We had a lovely few days away (although not exactly relaxing) but it took our minds off our normal BUSY, BUSY, BUSY lives!

We ended our trip with a very strange visit to Roger Wilkins Cider Farm in Mudgley just down the road from Glastonbury.  Strange in that it was down the narrowest, longest scary lane and was a ‘different world’ when we got there. Very ‘local’ if you get me!  Anyway Roger’s cider is my favourite cider of all time and we wanted to buy some for ourselves and a 30 litre box for our next event.  Roger turned out to be quite friendly and obliged with said cider.  We bought his strawberries too and they were delish!

Here are a few pics of our time away – note the Banksy at Roger Wilkins farm….

 

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Efficiency in the brew process

I thought I’d blog a little today to tell you a little bit about the improvements we’ve made to our kit so that it makes the process is much more efficient.

The mash tun (the big tank that we add liquor (water) and grain to) was made by a guy who takes massive old dairy pipes, cuts them up and welds them into anything you want.  When we commissioned our mash tun we asked for a false bottom ledge to be put in so we could put our false bottom on it to separate the extracted grain from the wort (the liquid made up of liquor and grain sugars). As we were new to the brewing game we trusted that the guy would make the ledge at the right height.  However for months afterwards using the kit it was apparent that we were losing so much wort because the ledge was too high.  So over the Christmas break we had the false bottom ledge lowered and strengthened by Stan (Jedi Master brewer and stainless steel welder extraordinaire).

This has made a huge difference to the efficiency of the brew process and because the new false bottom is working so well we are now much quicker brewers!  The transfer to the boiler is uber quick now, so much so that (although we had an extra early 7am start on Sunday) we were finished brewing at 1pm and Mr M was able to get home to see the match on Sunday afternoon.

So we are getting better at this brewing thing.  But you know you only learn through doing and seeing what needs changing.  We can brew so much more for your delectation and enjoyment!

We are having some more improvements made very soon and I’ll tell you about those soon….

For now keep drinking real ale and supporting your fab real ale pubs!

Salut! xxx

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Belated Happy New Year from Melwood Beer Co!!!

Where did January go??

It’s been busy for Melwood – not on the brewing front, although we are making amends for that now – but because we’ve been having work done on the Mash Tun.  It’s been needing doing for a while now so we had it done at the beginning of the month to allow us to brew much more efficiently.  I’m happy to report that it has done just that and our brew days are now not only more efficient but are considerably shorter!

Other news:

We have new casks!!! Yahoo!!! 110 of them! Stainless steel ones! This will double our brewing capacity going forward and mean we can supply more beer to our fabulous existing customers and enable us to get beer into new pubs so you can delight in it too!

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We’ve also been busy tidying the brewery; making sure that everything has it’s place and cleaning like mad!

cleanbrew        tidyoffice

BUT……..

We are back to brewing now and we’ll be busy bringing you new beers and ‘old’ favourites (core beers – Knowsley Blonde, Stanley Gold, Father Ted etc)

Paleface

 

 

Our new Beer: Paleface

 

I hope to report some good news in the coming weeks but in the meantime keep drinking real ale and supporting our pubs!

Salut!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Autumn Days and the brewery gets colder….plus Southport Beer Festival

Well my lovelies, Autumn has sure hit home! It’s been a lot colder than usual round these parts and I can feel the layers building up to keep me warm!
I’ve been up to my usual tricks of cask washing, mash tun digging and copper cleaning, not to mention the fermenters as well as trying to keep the falling leaves from being blown into the brewery! And I’ve been working on our website which has gone live now, so check it out www.melwoodbeer.co.uk

equinox - Copy (177x250)

We’ve got one beer on at the Southport Beer Festival – Equinox English Pale Ale 4% ABV and the details to the festival are:

Festival Dates & Times:

17/10/2013
18/10/2013
19/10/2013

St John’s Ambulance Hall
20 Wright Street
Southport
PR9 0TU

Contact:

Oct: 17-19 (Thu-Sat)
14th Southport Sandgrounder Beer Festival, St John’s Ambulance Hall, Wright Street,Southport(3min from Southport Station).
50 real ales plus ciders + perries & Fruit Wines.
Open: Thu 6-11pm; Fri & Sat 12noon-11 pm. Non-memb £3 all Sessions, Members (with Membership Cards) free all times.
Food available all sessions.
http://www.southportCamra.org.uk blog: http://tinyurl.com/beerex13

Check it out for some fine ales groovsters!!!

Also yesterday I had the pleasure of meeting the former occupier of our brewery, Mr John Aspinall of Cambrinus Brewery! But more on that next week….

Until then pals, keep drinking craft beer!!! Salut!!

me 13.10.13

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